Entrepreneur-in-Residence Program

Entrepreneur-in-Residence (EIR) Program offers OHSU inventors and entrepreneurs opportunities to receive one-on-one mentoring with seasoned business executives. The purpose of this program is to provide OHSU researchers with advice about commercialization and startup processes and paths.    

EIRs have a wealth of experience in facilitating the development of innovative ideas, new venture development and advising innovators in the life sciences industry. You can learn more about each of our EIRs below.

Rob Arnold

Rob Arnold

Rob is the executive director of Health Commons Project, a public health service accelerator company developed by the Washington State Department of Health in consultation with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Health Commons provides technical assistance to Washington state schools and local health jurisdictions to ensure all Washington residents get equitable access to COVID care services.

In addition to Health Commons, Rob is an entrepreneur in residence at OHSU and digital health advisor to UW and Fred Hutch. Previously, Rob was a strategic advisor to Clario Medical (sold to Intelerad), CEO of Geospiza (sold to Perkin Elmer), CEO of Crossport Systems (sold to Metroworks/Motorola) and ST Labs (sold to Lionbridge).

David Katz

David Katz

David is the founder and chief scientific officer of Sparrow Pharmaceuticals, a Portland-based biopharmaceutical company that aims to spare patients the ravages of steroids. Prior to founding Sparrow, David was a pharmaceutical R&D leader at Abbott and AbbVie, where he led clinical development and drug discovery teams, and was a personalized medicine pioneer.

David held postdoctoral fellowships in immunology at the Universities of Chicago and Michigan, earned M.Phil. and Ph.D. degrees in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University, and is an alumnus of Pomona College. He has published over 50 peer-reviewed scientific papers.

In copious spare time, he is actively involved in new play development and is a glass artist.

Steve Runnels

Steve Runnels

Steve has more than 28 years’ international business management experience in the healthcare industry. He has served as president and CEO of several startup biopharmaceutical companies in the US and internationally. He was executive vice president and board member of publicly traded NeoTherapeutics, Inc., and vice president of marketing and business development at Sigma-Aldrich, a fortune 500 company.

He has led drug discovery and in vitro diagnostic product development activities in the therapeutic areas of the central nervous system, oncology, clinical cytogenetics, assisted reproductive technologies, immunohematology and disease of bone and cartilage.

Steve is an entrepreneur in residence at the University of Washington and recently held the position as CEO of ProtoTech, Inc., a private, clinical stage company focused on the development of therapeutics for Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and AL Amyloidosis. He is a senior industry advisor for the National Institutes of Health Commercialization Program. He was on the advisory board for extension courses in medical product development at the University of California - Irvine and is on the board of directors at Biosome, Inc. Mr. Runnels holds a B.S. in cell biology and a certification from the American Society of Clinical Pathology as a specialist in immunohematology.

Richard Rylander, Jr.

Richard Rylander

Richard has more than 40 years’ experience in pharmaceutical and biotech, covering a wide range of areas including sales, management, marketing, training, operations, market research, and IT. His ground-breaking work creating the specialty distributions systems for Tracleer® and Zavesca® became the basis for the FDA's Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies program. He is also an inventor and patent holder. His device development work in diabetes combined several technologies for a unique product.

Having launched several Orphan drugs, Rylander is well versed in identifying unique market niches as well as dealing with managed care, pricing, reimbursement, Medicare and Medicaid. He has also created call center support systems, including a unique software system for managing high-risk patients. Rylander has been involved in multiple startups and has consulted for companies evaluating new products. He has extensive experience in contract negotiation and management, performance review systems, and incentive planning.

Please contact oce@ohsu.edu to connect with an EIR or learn more about this program.